I love the Late Late Toy show, even though it has already passed, it was the best ever this year, full of emotional moments.
I see the toy show as part of the fabric of Ireland, cosy and warm.
The Toy Show creates family memories. Back in Portarlington when I was a young fella we had a small bicycle shop so my dad was one of Santa helpers in the town.
Every year without fail we gathered for the Toy Show.
Since my own family came along, Oisín aged 11 y and Darragh aged nine, with myself and my wife Carol we all settle in to watch the goings on.
Ryan always does an amazing opening and the tone is set.
How can you forge families memories? It’s not the big bang events or trips to Florida (I have never been), it’s the way we connect with each other on a daily basis.
Family Traditions become part of the ‘language’ of the family; they help keep us connected, an expression of unity that strengthens family bonds.
They provide a sense of continuity and feelings of belonging. Family Traditions nurture and foster children's stability and security all supporting family wellbeing and emotional health.
Every year the Late Late Toy Show offers us pure moments of shared joy.
This year there was sadness too as Gay Byrne was remembered with a photo on the set.
I think his spirit was there. Fundamentally the toys are only the props.
The real magic dust of the Late Late Toy Show is the ability to bring the nation’s families together and enhance our relationships and well being.
Take any opportunity to create your own family traditions.
You can use every day routines such as bed time, taking a moment to talk, read, pray, snuggle up, or reflect on three good things that happened today.
The ‘3 Good Things’ tradition helps children orientate towards a positive and grateful outlook.
Positive Psychology shows that grateful people tend to be happier, healthier and more fulfilled.
Its funny how your memory works. I remember my nanna's brown bread in Waterford had a particular taste and how my nanny from Laois would sit in her chair with me … all these memories centred about warmth, safe and nurturing.
As a parent, grandparent, uncle, or aunt this is what is the key, emotional experiences you are trying to create for your children to thrive.
Often we need an activity to connect – playing, sport, drawing, reading, etc. Now is the time to relax and let your ‘inner child’ out to play.
This can be such an uplifting and positive experience. Go and play this Christmas.